Today’s sports post: The top 50 NBA players of all time [With Comment by John]

Featured image Actually, the sports post of the day is Scott’s item “The Tao of Gregg Popovich.” But readers might also be interested in Jack McCallum’s list for Sports Illustrated of the best 50 NBA players of all time. McCallum has been covering the NBA for 35 years and is a member of the Basketball Hall of Fame (for his writing). Twenty years ago, he was on the committee that named the »

The Tao of Gregg Popovich

Featured image Gregg Popovich is the highly successful coach of the San Antonio Spurs. Jason Gay gives us a glimpse into the Tao of Popovich in the Wall Street Journal column “The Popovich for president movement” (accessible via Google here, I hope). Gay clearly admires Popovich and “his clipped in-game interviews.” Gay’s column was inspired by Popovich’s “classic exchange with TNT reporter David Aldridge during Tuesday night’s Spurs-Heat game” If you haven’t »

Sports post of the day: The forgotten miracle on ice

Featured image Twenty years before the 1980 U.S. Olympic hockey team defeated the Russians and won the Gold Medal at the Lake Placid Olympics, our 1960 Olympic hockey accomplished the same feat. As in 1980, the win against the heavily favored Russians occurred in the semifinals. The 1960 team came from 2-1 down to win 3-2 on goals by 145-pound Billy Christian (a relative of John’s oldest daughter’s husband, I think). It »

Today’s sports post: Canton

Featured image The NFL announced its latest Hall of Fame class last week. The new members are Brett Favre, Kenny Stabler, Marvin Harrison, Kevin Greene, Orlando Pace, Dick Stanfel, Eddie DeBartolo Jr, and Tony Dungy. The first five seem obviously to belong. Favre retired as the NFL’s all-time leader in completions, yards, and touchdowns. He’s a three-time MVP. Stabler led his Raiders to the AFC title game each season from 1973-77 and »

Today’s sports post: Super Bowl (don’t call me) L [UPDATED]

Featured image I’m no football historian, but I have seen nearly all L of the Super Bowls. I don’t recall ever witnessing defense being played as well by two competing Super Bowl teams as it was yesterday. Denver’s defense must be among the best of all time. A few weeks ago it made Tom Brady, surely one of the best five quarterbacks ever in my opinion, look ordinary at best. Yesterday, they »

Sports for Politics’ Sake at the Washington Post [with comment by Paul]

Featured image Paul notes below the irrepressible reflexes of the Washington Post’s arts and entertainment coverage that often appears in their misnamed Style section (misnamed because its relentless politicization shows it has little style and no class). But apparently the problem extends to the Sports section as well. I don’t often take in the Post’s sports section any more, but this morning happened to find me in Washington, DC, where I made »

NFL extends “Rooney Rule” to women

Featured image I’ve found that big corporations sometimes respond to sustained attacks and bad publicity by trying to establish their liberal bona fides. They might launch an aggressive affirmative action program for hiring and/or for the selection of vendors (such as outside legal counsel). Or they might embrace a big liberal agenda item such as criminal justice reform. The idea is to show that they’re really not bad guys after all. Or »

Bud Grant wins

Featured image Former Vikings coach Bud Grant is a man’s man and a class act. Having grown up in Minnesota as a Vikings fan from their first season, I have thought a lot about Bud as showboating has become an art form among NFL players. Grant coached many great players in his years with the Vikings, but showboating was not in their repertoire. Grant’s stoicism and self-possession set the standard of behavior. »

Are You a Minnesota Sports Fan? No? Congratulations!

Featured image No doubt you are aware of today’s playoff game between the heavily-favored Seattle Seahawks and the Minnesota Vikings. The temperature in Minneapolis at kickoff was six degrees below zero, one of the coldest NFL games ever played. The Vikings came out strong and mostly dominated play. But a fluke play that started with a bad snap, together with a Vikings fumble, gave the Seahawks a 10-9 lead. Then the Vikings »

This day in college football history

Featured image New Year’s Day has always provided a festival of college football. For decades, the four most important bowl games — Cotton, Sugar, Orange, and Rose — were almost always played on January 1. That’s no longer the case. Now, there’s a national championship game that’s never played on New Year’s Day. This year, moreover, the powers-that-be decided to play the two semifinal games on New Year’s Eve. College football fans »

Meadowlark Lemon, RIP

Featured image The Harlem Globetrotters’ legendary star Meadowlark Lemon has died at the age of 83. Impossible to believe that he was that old already. I always thought the Globetrotters could be seen as a metaphor for modern American politics, with the Washington Generals playing the part of the Republican Party, destined to lose to a flashy team with no end of gimmicks and a referee corps and scorekeepers (read: the mainstream »

Dan Gelernter: Obama does the military

Featured image We haven’t gotten around to noting the Obama administration’s order to open all military jobs to women, “removing the final barriers that kept women from serving in combat, including the most dangerous and grueling commando posts.” Dan Gelernter is an occasional contributor to the Weekly Standard and chief executive officer of Dan comments: America takes its sports more seriously than its military. This is the conclusion we can draw »

The NFL Has Become Unwatchable

Featured image I was a pro football fan as a boy back in the 1960s, when our local TV station in South Dakota featured Chicago Bears and, later, Green Bay Packers games. After that, for a long time I rarely watched a pro football game. This year, not being as busy as in the past, I have seen more NFL games than in any recent season. Yesterday I was home nursing a »

J.J. Watt’s microaggression

Featured image J.J. Watt, a defensive end for the Houston Texans, is arguably the best player in the National Football League. Andy Dalton is the red-headed star quarterback for the Cincinnati Bengals. Some call him “The Red Rifle.” Last night, after Houston upset previously undefeated Cincinnati and held the Bengals to six points, Watt said this: Our goal was to come out here and make the Red Rifle look like a Red »

Every Sports Press Conference Ever

Featured image Weird Al Yankovic is an unappreciated comic genius, and here he does the perfect send up of every postgame press conference you’ve ever watched on ESPN. A nice interlude before tonight’s debate. Which prompts a thought: Al—can you do one of these for the presidential debates? Why let Saturday Night Live have all the fun? Come to think of it, this looks a lot like every think tank panel discussion »

Affirmation of God as unsportsmanlike conduct

Featured image Sportsmen have been praising God and crediting him for their achievements since before the days of the Gipper. But now, such praise has been deemed unsportsmanlike conduct by a high school referee. Fox News reports: A Christian high school quarterback was flagged by the referee when he showed a simple sign of faith by briefly raising a finger to the sky after scoring a 73-yard touchdown. 17-year-old Dante Turo of »

A die-in to kill for

Featured image The Twin Cities Marathon went off without a hitch yesterday. The perfect weather didn’t hurt a bit. The Star Tribune reports that Kenyans placed first, second, and third among the men competing in the race. An Ethiopian joined two Kenyans in the top three among the women. A good time was had by all. Black Lives Matter could not be reached for comment. As you may recall, the local Black »